In real life, we're going to go out on a limb and say that your ideal man probably isn't a hitman, a gang member, a crime boss, or a thug serving a dime for manslaughter. (And if he is, hey, we don't judge. Go ahead. Do your thing.) But there's something to be said for criminally hot heroes in romance novels. Maybe it's the lure of the forbidden. Maybe there's something about the sly smile and dark, sexy confidence of a bad boy that women just can't help but love. Whatever the allure, let's face it: there's no shortage of hot criminal heroes in romance land. So without further ado, here are our picks for the cream of the crop:
(Note: There's a mix of dark and lighter reads on this list. Pay attention to the author's warnings about triggers if you don't like surprises!)
Until he realized he would do anything, fight anyone, tear the world apart if it meant saving her.
Okay, okay. We know you're not supposed to judge a book by it's cover. But come on. We all do it to some extent! Who among us hasn't bought a book based on nothing but the unreasonably hot dude on the cover? Here at Romance Rehab, we've been burned by this practice a time or two (or ten). But we've also really lucked out a few times and found some great reads underneath the hot dude on the cover. So, we're here to help you NOT fall into the same traps we have. You're welcome. Here are a few of our favorites great reads with the hottest cover dudes you'll ever find:
I don't know about you, but I've always loved the "fake boyfriend" trope in romance novels. There's just something so fabulous about two people who enter into a fake relationship, determined NOT to feel anything real, only to have love jump up and smack them in the face. So for all you folks out there who love this trope as much as I do, here's our picks for the hottest fake boyfriends you'll ever read about, listed in no particular order:
One night turns into a snowed-in weekend away, and even the blizzard of the century can't cool the fire between us. I can't get enough--of his smile, of his body, of the way he makes me feel.
With so many folks on the east coast stuck in their homes thanks to Mother Nature's latest cruel joke (aka: Snowmageddon 2017), we thought it might be a good idea to put together a little reading list of our favorite romance novels about people who are trapped and/or stranded together. You're welcome. Pour yourself a glass of wine, tuck yourself under a cozy blanket on the couch and fire up your Kindles. These are all awesome:
New York Times and USA Today best selling author, Lori Wilde has sold seventy-eight works of fiction to four major New York Publishing houses. She holds a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Texas Christian University and a certificate in forensic nursing from Kaplan University. She is a member of the Internal Association of Forensic Nurses.
Her first NYT bestseller, the third book in her Twilight, Texas series, The First Love Cookie Club has been optioned for a television movie.
A popular writing instructor, Lori is a three time RITA finalist and has four times been nominated for Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award. She’s won the Colorado Award of Excellence, the Wisconsin Write Touch Award, The Golden Quill, the Lories, and The More than Magic. Her books have been translated into 26 languages and excerpted in Cosmopolitan, Redbook, Complete Woman, and Quick and Simple magazines. She lives in Texas with her husband, Bill.
I've had lots and lots of jobs in lots of different industries. (I don't play well with others, OK? Don't judge.) But for all my job hopping over the years, I have yet to find a boss who inspires any feelings in me other than disgust and annoyance. I've certainly never encountered any of the sexy hotness that seems to exist in the world of boss/employee romance novels today. But just because hot bosses are about as real as unicorns and yummy doughnuts that aren't high in calories, there's no reason we can't enjoy them in romance novels, right? With that in mind, here are our top picks for the yummiest bosses in the romance genre today:
Known for “sensual, empowered stories enveloped in heady romance” (Publishers Weekly), her books have been Cosmopolitan Magazine “Red Hot Reads” twice and have been translated into ten languages. Winner of the Award of Excellence, The Washington Post called her “One of the top writers in America”; and she has been featured in Entertainment Weekly, NPR, USA Today, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, and TIME Magazine. A graduate of Stanford University, she has given keynote speeches at publishing conferences from Copenhagen to Berlin to San Francisco, including a standing-room-only keynote at Book Expo America in New York City.
Bella also writes the New York Times bestselling Four Weddings and a Fiasco series as Lucy Kevin. Her “sweet” contemporary romances also include the new USA Today bestselling Walker Island series written as Lucy Kevin.
If not behind her computer, you can find her reading her favorite authors, hiking, swimming or laughing. Married with two children, Bella splits her time between the Northern California wine country and a 100-year-old log cabin in the Adirondacks.
Guest post from author Isabel Jordan
We love you guys, but maybe this list, which contains things I’ve heard men do (no, not you, honey, but other men), is the reason why so many women love romance novels. Because a romance novel hero would never:
If you're like me, you love paranormal romance, but often get a little weary of all the gloom and doom. Let's face it. Books about vampires and fae and shape shifters can get a wee bit dark. (Or they can get a wee bit...menage-y, if you get my meaning. Not that there's anything wrong with that. But that's a WHOLE other list). So, if you're looking for a few reads that have plenty of laughs mingled in with all the usual supernatural yummy goodness, here are our picks for the top laugh-until-you-pee-your-pants romances. Don't read them in public, folks. Snort-laughs aren't attractive.
(And please note: These are all multi-book series, which is basically the literary version of the Holy Grail for all you book lovers out there. You're welcome.)